Many homes in this day and age have electric heating rather than gas. Many people believe that just having an electric bill coming through every quarter is a much better option than having both an electric bill and a gas bill. But are you getting your money’s worth and using the right type of heaters for your circumstances? There are two main types of electric heaters: storage heaters and electric storage systems that use radiators.
Storage heaters are heaters that are built in to your wall, kind of like radiators except for when they are on they don’t have water pumping round them like electric central heating does. The biggest advantage to storage heaters is that they use electricity at night and store it for use during the day. Overnight electric storage heaters collect heat and store it in special heat-storing bricks. This means that the storage heaters run during the off peak hours which is a significant amount cheaper than day time electric rates!
Storage heaters have progressed a lot over the years and modern day heaters are slimmer and come with a charge control. The charge control or automatic charge control adjusts the amount of heat that is stored overnight. This is done by measuring your room’s temperature and if it’s cooler the heater stores less heat which saves money. If it has a manual charge control also known as a mutual charge control you have to adjust all of this yourself. Storage heaters give out heat continuously during both the day and night as long as there are warm bricks behind it. Many people even choose to use storage heaters in the summer for a little extra heat but often find they need another source of heat during the winter months.
Electric storage systems that use radiators also use off peak electricity to heat up a large insulated tank of water to around 85°C. The water is then pumped around a central heating system with radiators and is controlled manually through a control package. If the temperature however was to fall below 60°C the water could also be heated during the day using peak time electricity. This specific type of system is normally installed when replacing a coal heating system and in homes that are not able to be reached with a gas pipe. There are different types of these heaters varying in size and quality to suit each individual household.
Electric storage systems that use radiators generally don’t need additional room heaters during the winter months providing you do everything you can to keep the heat in the house i.e. not leaving doors open. During the summer you can choose to not use the heating system as regularly and instead only use it on cold nights. During the winter you can use the timer to set when you would like it to turn on and off so you don’t have to worry about waking up in the morning and having a mad dash down to the controls to switch it on before everyone else wakes up. Using the timer has also been proven to save money on your electric bill rather than having the heating on when and as you switch it on.
Some homes may also be eligible for a heating allowance depending on their circumstances so make sure that this is something you look into as soon as you can.